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News - 2012

Connect, collaborate and commercialize - Canadian innovation at CDMN Canada 3.0 2013

Canadian Digital Media Network
November 29, 2012

Registration for CDMN Canada 3.0 2013, Canada’s only national digital media conference focused on the commercialization of innovation, is now open at www.cdmn.ca/canada30.

Taking place May 14 & 15, 2013 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, the conference will feature world-class speakers talking about issues from entrepreneurship to talent, attracting investment to gamification, and celebrate Canadian achievements in the commercialization of information and communications technology (ICT) and mobile to prospects, partners and funders from Canada as well as international markets. As previously announced, CDMN Canada 3.0 2013 will be co-located with the GRAND 2013 conference, which will further increase industry-university networking at CDMN Canada 3.0.

Through CDMN’s deployment of a crowdsourcing platform, CDMN Canada 3.0’s SoapBox (powered by HitSend) at http://ideas.canada30.ca, Canadian digital media companies are encouraged to come to Canada 3.0 and share their success stories. If you have an idea for a session that celebrates Canadian capacity in digital media, suggest it on SoapBox, where attendees can vote to make your session part of the program.

Bestselling author of Power Friending, social media expert, speaker, TV host, and entrepreneur, Amber Mac will host CDMN Canada 3.0 2013.

Confirmed keynote presentations include:
  • Chris Anderson, former Editor-in-Chief, Wired Magazine and bestselling author of Makers: The New Industrial Revolution, The Long Tail and Free, presenting on how a generation of ‘Makers’ using the Web’s innovation model will help drive the next big wave in the global economy, as the new technologies of digital design and rapid prototyping gives everyone the power to invent – creating ‘the long tail of things’
  • Jane McGonigal, game designer, futurist and bestselling author of Reality is Broken, is harnessing the power of Internet games in new ways to help solve some of the biggest challenges facing our world today and tomorrow. She will discuss gamification principles for digital media companies and non-tech companies looking to implement these concepts to drive engagement and productivity.

CDMN Canada 3.0 2013 programming updates, registration details, partnership and sponsorship opportunities will be posted to www.cdmn.ca/canada30. Follow @can3_0 and @cdmn on Twitter, like the Canada30Forum page on Facebook and join the LinkedIn Canada30Forum Group for updates.


Early bird - $795CDN until February 1, 2013
Full price after February 1, 2013 - $895CDN
One-day pass - $500CDN

Registration fees do not include HST and Administrative Service Fees. Applicable taxes and service fees will be applied to registration fee upon checking out.

NORCAT Joins Canadian Digital Media Network to Contribute to Digital Media Innovation

Canadian Digital Media Network
November 27, 2012, Sudbury, ON

Northern Centre for Advanced Technology (NORCAT), a leading private, non-profit organization that empowers their clients, staff, and community partners to drive a culture of innovation, productivity, and health and wellness in Canada and beyond, today announced that it has joined the Canadian Digital Media Network (CDMN) a cross-Canada network of digital media innovation nodes collaborating to advance digital innovation nationally.

Through membership in this unique national network, NORCAT will gain domestic and international market exposure for the organization and its client companies. NORCAT will also benefit from having access to unique services that enable the facility and its clients to leverage proven regional programming and best practices of network members. Joining Canada’s largest members-only online collaboration of commercialization resources immediately expands the node’s client support capability, while enabling national access to NORCAT’s regional resources.

“The CDMN was initiated in 2009 and has grown over the past three years to become a collaboration network connecting innovation hubs across the country,” said Kevin Tuer, CDMN Managing Director. “We’re delighted to bring on board another organization dedicated to furthering Canada’s competitiveness in the global digital economy, and to advancing commercialization of digital media innovations.”

NORCAT serves as Sudbury’s Regional Innovation Centre partnering with community stakeholders to help start and accelerate the growth of innovative companies. Their focus is to serve non-profit and for-profit clients that are motivated to address big market opportunities and solve complex global problems. Their clients range from innovative entrepreneurial ventures through to large, multi-billion dollar global companies across an array of industry sectors from mining and manufacturing to ICT, cleantech, and / healthcare.

“Serving as the CDMN node for the Greater Sudbury Area enables our online and digital media clients to access unique services and networks from around the world” said Don Duval, Chief Executive Officer of NORCAT. “Participating in this network further demonstrates our belief that the only way we as a country can compete on the global stage and truly drive sustained economic and social prosperity for Canada - is by working together and sharing ideas.”

Effective today, NORCAT will be a channel for driving participation in national initiatives that support the commercialization of innovation. Applications are currently open for the CDMN Soft-Landing Program, an initiative for mature start-ups and small- to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) who can benefit from a getting a toe-hold outside Canada to expand their businesses. Until December 1, companies can apply for up to $4000CDN worth of funding to cover travel and accommodation expenses associated with an up to three month stay at a business accelerator in an economy of interest. To learn more, visit softlanding.cdmn.ca.

Another major initiative is CDMN Canada 3.0, Canada’s only national digital media forum, which is in its fifth year and will be staged in Toronto in May 14 & 15, 2013. Registration opens this week. Further details will be posted at www.cdmn.ca/canada30.

About The Canadian Digital Media Network

The Canadian Digital Media Network (CDMN) www.cdmn.ca is dedicated to establishing Canada as a world leader in digital media by enabling connections and collaboration of people across the country – entrepreneurs, companies, research institutes and government – and bringing more digital solutions to market. The CDMN comprises Canada’s largest concentration of business-driven digital media research, technology development, and digital commercialization expertise; it connects digital media expertise and capability from coast-to-coast, creating a digital convergence corridor. Digital media covers a broad spectrum of technology and services, and includes any information created and shared virtually. Follow @CDMN on Twitter, join the Canadian Digital Media Network Group on LinkedIn and like the CanadianDigitalMediaNetwork Page on Facebook.

About Northern Centre for Advanced Technologies

The Northern Centre for Advanced Technologies (NORCAT) www.norcat.org, is a leading private, non-profit organization that empowers their clients, staff, and community partners to drive a culture of innovation, productivity, and health and wellness in Canada and beyond. To deliver on this mandate, NORCAT provides an array of services including mentorship and advisory services, entrepreneurship education, market research, software development, product design, prototyping and testing, capital services, and facility and event services. Follow @norcat on Twitter, and like the NORCAT Page on Facebook.

Media Contact

Shelley Grandy, CDMN Sr. PR Advisor, 905-866-2656 or sgrandy@cdmn.c
Don Duval, NORCAT CEO, 705-521-8324

Funding Opportunity for Life Sciences / Healthcare, Cleantech and Advanced Manufacturing Entrepreneurs in the Greater Sudbury Area!

Level-UP Funding Program
November 20, 2012

In partnership with the Ontario Network of Excellence, NORCAT is excited to announce the Level-Up! funding opportunity for entrepreneurs. This Ontario-wide initiative is a $1 million dollar funding program available to Ontario’s early-stage technology entrepreneurs looking to advance their company to the next level of growth through a strategic, short-term, high-impact project. This program is only offered through the regional innovation centres in the Ontario Network of Excellence (ONE). Use of funds should be a strategic priority at the company, and eligible so long as costs meet the Business Acceleration Program’s requirements. This may include engaging a service provider, specialist or contractor, marketing, a short-term executive, payment for 3rd-party validation or certification fees, contribute to a customer demonstration, select marketing activities or other eligible fees.

From a financial perspective, $15,000 is contributed by the ONE Business Acceleration Program plus a minimum of $5,000 cash commitment is required from the entrepreneurial venture. Currently there is an open round accepting applications for Life Sciences / Healthcare, Cleantech and Advanced Manufacturing Entrepreneurs in the Greater Sudbury Area!

Deadline for Applications:

  • Thursday, December 6th, 2012


  • Life Sciences and Healthcare companies in Ontario with no more than $4M in private investment, $2M annual revenue, or Cleantech or Advanced Manufacturing companies in Ontario with no more than $2M in private investment, $1M annual revenue
  • Cannot be a subsidiary of a larger parent company
  • Must be a registered client with NORCAT and have met with a NORCAT Advisor who will refer the application
  • Project duration cannot exceed four months
  • Project outcomes need to clearly demonstrate how the funding will enable the company to accelerate its growth and ultimately create jobs and wealth for the Ontario economy
If you are interested in getting engaged with NORCAT and applying for this funding opportunity, please reach out to entrepreneurship@norcat.org. We look forward to hearing from you!

Click Here to learn more about Level-UP! funding.

"Innovation for a Greater Sudbury" with Keynote Speaker Tom Rand

Innovation For A Greater Sudbury with Tom Rand
November 7, 2012

An engineer, environmentalist, venture capitalist and philosopher, Tom Rand is a highly-sought after Canadian speaker. His ambition is to bring clean technology to life, using an optimistic and pragmatic approach. Drawing examples from his own successful ventures and global leadership, Tom reveals concrete solutions to carbon emission problems. Currently, Rand is the Cleantech Lead Advisor at MaRS Discovery District in downtown Toronto, where he helps the next generation of cleantech companies grow to global leadership.

“Tom is a Canadian success story who embodies an entrepreneurial spirit that motivates and inspires would-be and existing entrepreneurs” cites Don Duval, Chief Executive Officer of NORCAT and former tech entrepreneur. “As Canada continues to evaluate and invest in creative solutions to drive our economic and social prosperity, it is critical that we learn from those who have made significant contributions.”

Tom’s talk will be followed by a panel discussion and question and answer period.

Appetizers will be served, and there will be a cash bar.

Date : Thursday, November 29, 2012
Time : 4:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Place : Cambrian College, eDome
Keynote Speaker : Tom Rand

Click Here to Register for the Event

Tapping old mines for heat may create new energy source

Energy-producers around the world inspire northern Ontario researchers
Old Mine
November 6, 2012
Article by CBC News - www.cbc.ca

If successful, electricity could be extracted from the warm pools of water inside the mines to generate electricity.

A bio-engineering professor at Laurentian University has conducted several feasibility studies on producing energy from abandoned mines and said this technology is already being used globally.

"There are about 10 installations around the world,” Ashley Scott said.

“Most of them are using abandoned coal mines, particularly in Europe."

Scott noted the Canadian example is in Nova Scotia, where an abandoned coal mine is being used to provide heating for local businesses.

He said he would like to see this happen in places like Sudbury.

The CEO with Northern Centre for Advanced Technology (NORCAT) in Sudbury agreed and added research needs to include mines that are still operational.

"The operating ones are the ones with the high utility bills, so if you can take the warm water that they have to pump out anyways for operations and run it through this system, everyone would take a peek at that,” Don Duval said.

“I think it would be absolutely groundbreaking."

Duval said companies from across the province have set up shop at NORCAT to research energy opportunities by using mines in Sudbury.

He said many are chasing what could become a major marking opportunity.

"If we can just prime the pump and get them going to prove out the model, then we see a whole new market opportunity that is beyond Ontario."

Scott added interest in the Sudbury region will continue to ramp up since a portion of Stobie mine is scheduled to close in the upcoming year.

Timing is critical, as a recent feasibility study in Bruce Mines pointed out. The municipality there wants to use the heat from pools of water in the mines to produce enough energy to run a greenhouse for exotic vegetables.

However Scott said the mines in that area have been closed for so long that they would be difficult to reopen for effective use.

"The last one was [open] perhaps before or during the Second World War, so we've had 50, 60 years of collapsing tunnels,” he said.

“The mine shafts are being capped off for safety reasons, there's a lot of retrofitting that would have to go on."

Nevertheless Plummer Township councillor Peter Spik said the community is still pursuing the possibility of geothermal energy.

"If we find the right private sector partner, I think this could happen very quickly,” Spik said.

“If we are unable to get that private sector partner, it's going to be a very, very slow and long process."

Spik noted the project would cost about $5 million to start.

NORCAT Centre Tenant named Finalist in 2012 Business Achievement Awards

October 26, 2012

BESTECH is proud to announce that the company was selected as a finalist in the 2012 Ontario Business Achievement Awards (OBAA). At the 30th annual OBAA held on Wednesday, October 24th, 2012 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, BESTECH was runner-up in the Desjardins Award for Large Business category. This honour rewarded two large businesses (over 100 employees) who are forward-thinking in their overall business practice from escalating sales and developing new markets to boosting employee morale and skill acquisition to elevating environmental stewardship and corporate citizenship.

The Ontario Business Achievement Awards were created to celebrate Ontario’s rich history of innovative, ethical and profitable business. Launched in 1983, the OBAAs shine a spotlight on innovation and entrepreneurial spirit that are at the heart of business in Ontario.

According to a representative at the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, “OBAA is the most prestigious industry gala in the province with a single focus on celebrating business success. BESTECH is now part of an exclusive group of Ontario companies who are recognized for their achievements in innovation, market expansion, exports and governance as well as successes in small and large business categories.”

BESTECH continues to strengthen its reputation of excellence as the company’s daily operations are guided by corporate strategic objectives that encompass open communication both internally and externally, ensuring employees have the tools and knowledge required to operate at their highest capacities, staying on top of industry trends, diversification of operations and common performance practices.

Despite falling short of the grand prize, BESTECH representatives were delighted to have made the cut amongst the number of businesses throughout Ontario who are eligible for this esteemed award. “It is a tremendous honour to be chosen as a finalist for an OBAA in the Large Business category”, stated Marc Boudreau, Co-CEO of BESTECH. “Our growth and quest to become recognized as global leaders of innovative products and services has enabled us to be distinguished alongside the other incredible finalists. This achievement was made possible due to the resourcefulness and commitment to quality that is exhibited by all BESTECH employees. They are the foundation of the company’s successes and I am proud of their personal growth and many accomplishments.”


With offices in Sudbury, Timmins, and Toronto, Ontario, BESTECH is a prominent Canadian firm which specializes in the areas of engineering, automation, software development and environmental monitoring to assist companies in the international mining industry enhance their productivity, profitability and safety. The firm also offers the following innovative solutions that enable mining organizations to increase efficiency, reduce energy costs and improve worker safety: NRG1-ECO™, AQM™, Portauls™ and RopeInspector™.

Ontario’s Manufacturing Future – 2012 Ontrak 2x4 Innovation Challenge at NORCAT

Ontrak 2x4 Innovation Challenge
October 25, 2012

On Saturday, October 27th, NORCAT is co-hosting Ontario’s 2012 Ontrak 2x4 Innovation Challenge, an event and opportunity to showcase Canada’s long-standing ingenuity in the manufacturing industry. The premise is quite simple – contestants are required to purchase a standard eight foot 2x4 piece of wood and using their imagination and limited supplies they need to create a product that has more value than the original 2x4. A panel of judges will listen, learn, and subsequently evaluate the contestant’s explanations of their creative masterpieces and winners will be selected.

It is common knowledge that Ontario and Canada’s manufacturing industry has been a strong contributor to our economy for the last 150 years. Recent challenges and popular explanations to our woes in the manufacturing industry centre around the increase in commodity prices and the resulting appreciation of the Canadian dollar, driving the calls for the manufacturing industry to reshape itself and enhance its productivity – a directive that is further emphasized by Canada’s recent slide in the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Assessment.

In this province alone, we have an exceptional talent base of nearly 800,000 people working in the manufacturing industry. Growing up in Southwestern Ontario I can personally attest to understanding the passion, pride, and quality of talent in this sector. With that foundation and perseverance through recessionary times, it is no surprise that recent data has shown strengthening opportunities and a return to positive job growth in Ontario’s manufacturing sector after nearly six years of decline.

The 2012 Ontrak 2x4 Innovation Challenge at NORCAT this Saturday is much more than simply a competition. It is an opportunity for our community to be inspired by our burgeoning entrepreneurs and witness the design and manufacturing creativity that still resonates in this province. The showcase opens at 11:00am to the public at the NORCAT Centre at 1545 Maley Drive on Saturday, October 27th, 2012. We look forward to seeing you.

Don Duval
Chief Executive Officer

Further details at http://ontrak.net/2x4.htm

Work programs give students a career test-drive

Artemis Jr. rover with NORCAT RESOLVE Drill

The "Artemis Jr." rover testing NORCAT's RESOLVE drilling technology.

October 24, 2012
Article by Virginia Galt, The Globe and Mail.

Stephanie Fudge’s last work placement through the Brock University co-operative education program was out of this world – or so it felt. As a planetary research associate with the Northern Centre for Advanced Technology Inc. in Sudbury, Ont., the 22-year-old environmental geoscience major spent much of her time in a lab with conditions designed to simulate properties of the moon, driving a rover and testing drills for use in space exploration.

“I had never tested a drill before working here or anything like that. But I have a lot of geological knowledge to bring to the table, and I think that was needed for the research side of things,” says Fudge, whose fall work term is with the environmental office at the Canadian Forces base in Petawawa, Ont.

“The projects I got to work on at NORCAT were just awesome, with NASA and the Canadian Space Agency. When you are writing a report that you know people at the Canadian Space Agency will be reading, that’s pretty special,” says Fudge, who accepted the Petawawa posting this semester to find more grounding in “the environmental work that people do here on Earth, instead of what’s done on the moon.”

As one of more than 80,000 Canadian university students who alternate their academic studies with co-op placements in work related to their courses, Fudge figures she will have a decided advantage when it comes to finding full-time work after graduation.

Read the full article at theglobeandmail.com

Manning Innovation Awards - Innovators, Entrepreneurs, Researchers Need Apply

Manning Innovation Awards - Innovators, Entrepreneurs, Researchers Need Apply
October 19, 2012

Since 1982, the Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation has been proud to inspire, acknowledge and award innovation within Canada. David Mitchell, Alberta Energy Company chief executive spawned the idea to recognize innovative talent within Canada back in 1980. Enlisting the former Premier of Alberta, Ernest Manning as the champion of such idea, has created one of Canada's most prestigious annual awards programs. During his seven terms of office, Alberta experienced the longest sustained economic boom in its history and Ernest Manning was associated with critical thinking and acknowledging the intelligence of the common person.

This awards program is dedicated to rewarding and recognizing deserving Canadians who aspire to "do good for the common good" - a principle foundation of Ernest Manning's life. By means of a nomination, Canadians who have demonstrated recent innovative talent in developing and successfully marketing a new concept, process or procedure, may be eligible for one of these awards:

- Encana Principal Award ($100,000)

- David E. Mitchell Award of Distinction ($25,000)

- Innovation Awards (2 at $10,000)

Recognizing that technologies do not always come from a lab, both of the $10,000 Innovation Awards are given to those without the benefit of research facilities or advanced education in the field of their innovation.

The 2012 award winners, along with their inspiring stories can be found in a recent edition of MacLean's magazine: http://www2.macleans.ca/2012/10/11/the-world-beaters/

The Manning Innovation Awards Foundation has an exceptional history of acknowledging and promoting leading Canadian innovation with strong market potential and differentiated IP - we strongly encourage all eligible innovators to apply as the recognition benefits stretch well beyond the awards!

The deadline for applications is December 3rd, 2012. For more information on the Manning Innovation awards, rules, eligibility and how to apply follow this link: http://www.manningawards.ca

Don Duval

CEO, NORCAT and Northern Ontario Chair, Manning Innovation Awards

Collaborative Networking Event Sparks Ideas for Social Innovation Projects Involving Youth for Northern Ontario

Collaborative Networking Event Sparks Ideas for Social Innovation Projects Involving Youth for Northern Ontario
October 4, 2012

SUDBURY – On Wednesday October 3, United Way Sudbury and Nipissing Districts along with several partners: Norcat, Creative e-Learning Design, GenNext, RDÉE, Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, Rethink Green, Community Futures Development Corporations, FedNor, Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Art Gallery of Sudbury, the Young Professionals Association, the Learning Disabilities Association, and the University of Sudbury, hosted a collaborative networking event that explored the possibilities of working together in response to the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s Future Fund. Most of these partners spoke to attendees about some of the projects they are involved in and some of the programs their agencies run.

“In Northern Ontario distance does not isolate us, distance connects us! We are about people and relationships. Working together to help support youth in our communities will prove beneficial for all involved!” said Ron Lessard, Executive Director of the Learning Disabilities Association. LDA has an office in Sudbury and in North Bay that provides support programs to youth with learning disabilities.

The objective of this networking event was to broaden everyone’s networks especially in terms of social innovation and youth entrepreneurship.

“We learned about the Future Fund and saw an opportunity to possibly collaborate with several agencies and organizations on a project or several projects that will involve youth and benefit Northern Ontario,” said Michael Cullen, Executive Director of United Way Sudbury and Nipissing Districts.

Don Duval, CEO of Norcat was the keynote speaker at the event and highlighted the global leadership position Canada has taken as it relates to social innovation and youth entrepreneurship. “Quite simply, social innovation is the design and application of better ways of meeting social needs. We as a community need to work together to collectively identify creative and sustainable strategies to solve some of our region’s and the world’s most intractable problems.”

Change starts here.

Sudbury needs to think 'bigger'

Don Duval, CEO of the Northern Centre for Advanced Technology, and Anne Cooper, of the Learning Initiative, participated in the Startup Canada town hall event in Sudbury on Wednesday, September 26, 2012.

Don Duval, CEO of the Northern Centre for Advanced Technology, and Anne Cooper, of the Learning Initiative, participated in the Startup Canada town hall event in Sudbury on Wednesday, September 26, 2012. JOHN LAPPA/THE SUDBURY STAR/QMI AGENCY

September 27, 2012
Article by Rita Poliakov, QMI Agency

When Anne Cooper decided to start the Leaning Initiative, she was working full-time, juggling her family and low on funds. But that didn't stop her.

"I was young then. I was passionate and excited. I had no cash. I had amazing mentors and amazing students," she said.

Learning Initiative is a school that helps people looking to start their own business or learn more about the business world.

Programs include self-employment development, employee development and trainer-facilitate development. Cooper launched the school in 1995, after she was laid off from her teaching job down south.

"I wanted to do this work," she said.

But none of it was easy, something that every entrepreneur eventually learns. Which is why Cooper joined other entrepreneurs and the Northern Centre for Advanced Technology at Startup Canada's town hall on Wednesday. Startup Canada, a group that supports entrepreneurs in the country, finished off its national town hall tour in Sudbury.

The tour was a way to connect with entrepreneurs nationwide and get businesses from different regions talking to each other.

Victoria Lennox, co-founder of Startup Canada, sees potential in the city.

"There's a lot of support for entrepreneurs (in Sudbury). That was clear," said Lennox after the town hall at the Days Inn. "Much more could be done to better align all of the support that exists to create a more cohesive community."

While Lennox acknowledged that the city has support systems for entrepreneurs, she'd like to see different organizations, like Sudbury's colleges and university, working together to strengthen these supports.

"There's definitely more work to be done," she said.

For Lennox, small businesses and entrepreneurs are essential to Canada's economy.

"We know that entrepreneurs are the net job creators. They're fuelling our economy. We don't seem to hav e entrepreneurship culture (in Canada)," she said, explaining that entrepreneurs should be thinking nationally and globally, rather than just regionally. "What we lack is thinking bigger."

Don Duval, the Northern Centre for Advanced Technology's CEO, sees a major problem in Canadian culture.

"Can you name 10 Canadian entrepreneurs? That's a problem. If you're thinking of becoming an entrepreneur and you have these role models ... (it'll be easier)," Duval said.

According to the CEO, the core challenges entrepreneurs face in Sudbury include finding mentors, getting funds and finding talent to join the team or business.

Like Lennox, Duval understands how important it is to support new businesses.

"Four to 10% of all new firms will become high-growth firms," he said. "The top 5% (of that figure) will contribute to two-thirds of job creation in this country," he said.

Duval would like to see more infrastructure created to support entrepreneurs in the city.

"In a small town, you need to leverage virtual networks. You need to figure out ways to have relationships with other innovative centres," he said.

Read Original Article from thesudburystar.com

NORCAT Hosts Startup Canada Innovation Town Hall

Startup Canada Sudbury Town Hall - Sept 26, 2012
September 26, 2012

Sudbury, ON – Startup Canada’s National Tour is in Sudbury today for its final Town Hall event as part of Startup Canada’s six-month tour to celebrate and inspire entrepreneurship across Canada.

Startup Canada is an entrepreneur-led, national movement to enhance the nation’s competitiveness and prosperity through entrepreneurship. Its National Tour has traveled coast to coast to engage more than 25,000 Canadians and 250 partner organizations to develop community-driven solutions to challenges facing entrepreneurs today. The Northern Centre for Advanced Technology (NORCAT), is co-hosting Sudbury’s Town Hall with Startup Canada.

“Building awareness and celebrating the accomplishments of our Canadian entrepreneurs is essential to create a vibrant ecosystem where existing and future entrepreneurs can be inspired” says Don Duval, CEO of NORCAT and former Vice President of the MaRS Discovery District. “As an innovation centre serving our community, we are excited to be part of the Startup Canada network and collaborate with our peers to help accelerate the growth of our ventures and ultimately enhance Canada’s social and economic prosperity”

The Regional Business Centre, another partner in the local tour, is looking forward to connecting with local entrepreneurs and other enterprise support organizations.

“The Regional Business Centre is pleased to collaborate with Startup Canada to allow entrepreneurs to express their business issues on a national scale,” said Judy Benvenuti, Business Centre, Coordinator. “We hope that after today’s event our entrepreneurs will leave feeling recognized, inspired and empowered.”

Startup Canada’s Sudbury Town Hall will develop community-driven action plans to overcome some of the key challenges facing Sudbury entrepreneurs, such as attracting and retaining staff; tapping into global markets; accessing funding; and creating a more entrepreneurial community.

A national audience is following the tour through Startup Canada’s interactive website, live web-streamed broadcasts of the tour, and active social media networks.

Startup Canada sponsors include Microsoft, Gowlings, Ernst & Young, Best Western Hotels, the Canadian Innovation Commercialization Program, Export Development Canada, The VideoBooth Company, Kick Ass Media, PubliAir, the Ottawa Technology Transfer Network, the Association of University Research Parks Canada, the Canadian Association of Business Incubation, the Evidence Network, Francis Moran & Associates, FreshBooks, Global Advantage Consulting Group, MSBi Valorisation, Podio, Backbone Magazine, HootSuite, ITWorld Canada, NextMTL, Paper.li, Sprouter, and Techvibes.

For additional information or interviews, contact:

Megan Campagna
Regional Innovation Centre Coordinator, Business Development, NORCAT
mcampagna@norcat.org      705-521-8324 ext. 223

About Startup Canada


Startup Canada is Canada’s first-ever, entrepreneur-led, national movement to enhance the nation’s competitiveness and prosperity by supporting and celebrating Canadian entrepreneurship. Startup Canada is harnessing the collective energies of Canadian entrepreneurs and enterprise support communities from Coast to Coast with the goals of providing the entrepreneurship community with a strong voice, promoting a vibrant entrepreneurial culture and creating a unified brand that Canadians can rally around. Startup Canada is launching this effort with the country’s first national entrepreneurship tour and campaign. The tour will run from March to September, engaging 25,000 Canadians and 250 partner organizations across the country. Entrepreneurs will participate in more than 30 Town Halls and 100 Fringe Events and connect through a social media groundswell campaign.

About The Northern Centre for Advanced Technology (NORCAT)


The Northern Centre for Advanced Technology (NORCAT) is a not-for-profit, non-share incorporated company. Located in Sudbury, Ontario Canada, NORCAT is in the heart of North America’s premiere hard rock mining territories.

NORCAT’s services include:

  • Specialized Mine Training
  • Occupational Health and Safety Services
  • Mining Solutions & Technology Development for Space Missions.

Read Full Article from startupcan.ca

Drive a Lunar Rover Exhibit at Dynamic Earth

July 20, 2012

Visitors at Dynamic Earth got the chance to remotely operate lunar rovers on July 19. The rovers are part of a field study called RESOLVE in Hawaii.

Who Owns the Asteroids? Space Mining Project Raises Legal Questions

Who Owns the Asteroids? Space Mining Project Raises Legal Questions - photo by NORCAT

When companies start mining in space, how will they claim property rights?

July 10, 2012
Article by Leonard David, SPACE.com Space Insider Columnist

Private firms across the globe are developing business plans and creating the technology to mine the surface of the moon and nearby asteroids, with the goal of tapping into the richness of outer space. Technological issues are being addressed, but what about the legal issues? How can someone claim ownership of an asteroid, or real-estate on the Moon?

This topic of "off-Earth property rights" was discussed at a space resources roundtable held in Golden, Colorado, convened by Planetary and Terrestrial Mining Sciences Symposium, the Colorado School of Mines and the Lunar and Planetary Institute.

SPACE.com asked Dale Boucher, NORCAT's Director of Innovation his thoughts on regulating mining claims in outer space:

More discussion on mining claims contrasted to surface rights should be part of the dialogue, said Dale Boucher, director of innovation at the Northern Centre for Advanced Technology (NORCAT) Inc. in Sudbury, Ontario. It is incumbent on governments to get together and create the regime in which space resource mining can take place, to enable economic activity, he added.

"I don't think a big mining industry is really going to get involved unless that have some surety that they can make a profit," Boucher said. "They can't make a profit from it unless there is some regulatory regime in place that allows them do that … whether that's tax incentives or whether it’s a mining claim concept," he said.

In terms of the United Nations playing a role, that organization requires consensus. "I don't see anything happening with consensus," Boucher said. "Maybe it really is going to be, let’s go out and do it and beg forgiveness instead of permission."

In many ways, it’s the classic causality dilemma of the chicken or the egg, Boucher noted. He’s not sure which is going to come first: the regulatory framework or the actual economic activity.

"But I think we’re on the cusp of both of those happening," Boucher said.

Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on a person’s point of view, Boucher said, he’s sure that the legal minds will get involved. "I'm suggesting that maybe we need to dig a little deeper. No pun intended."

Read Full Article from SPACE.com

Extraterrestrial Mining Could Reap Riches & Spur Exploration

NORCAT RESOLVE Drill testing in Mauna Kea Hawaii

The RESOLVE Drill (developed by NORCAT) being tested in Mauna Kea, Hawaii (photo by NASA)

June 25, 2012
Article by Leonard David, SPACE.com Space Insider Columnist

Mining the moon and nearby asteroids could add trillions of dollars to the world economy and help humans reach farther into space.

Many privately owned companies are looking to capitalize on extraterrestrial mining, but hitting paydirt will require merging the talents of the space and mining communities.

A Space Resources Roundtable meeting was held in Golden, Colorado on June 4-7 to talk about the future of space mining, its goals and challenges.

The conference was organized by the Planetary and Terrestrial Mining Sciences Symposium, the Colorado School of Mines and the Lunar and Planetary Institute.

Rob Mueller, a senior technologist from the Surface Systems Office at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, mentioned many of the take-home messages from the roundtable.

..."The next logical step is to land on the moon with a prospecting mission to confirm the presence of water, locate it and characterize its physical state," Mueller told SPACE.com

Mueller mentioned the Regolith and Environment Science and Oxygen and Lunar Volatile Extraction, or RESOLVE, hardware, built to prospect for water and other volatiles on the moon’s surface. RESOLVE is a joint project of NASA and the Canadian Space Agency.

"It is looking for a ride, and a prototype is being tested on Mauna Kea in Hawaii this July," Mueller said.

NASA can’t afford not to invest in in-situ resource utilization, Mueller emphasized, since its goal is to land humans on Mars and the space agency’s Design Reference Architecture relies on in-situ resource utilization to make it feasible.

"ISRU could also open up a new economic sphere of influence, which could be strategically important in the future," Mueller concluded...

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NORCAT RESOLVE Drill on display at Kennedy Space Center


NORCAT RESOLVE Drill fixed to the Artemis Jr. lunar rover in Cape Canaveral, Florida.

June 13, 2012

CAPE CANAVERAL — The U.S. and Canada are setting the stage for a lunar prospecting mission aimed at demonstrating technologies that could open the solar system to human exploration.

In a sandy yard at Kennedy Space Center, engineers and scientists are developing a prototype of a rover designed to extract oxygen from hydrogen-rich lunar soil and produce water.

The four-wheeled prototype will face critical field tests in Hawaii in July. A fully tested, flight-ready rover still needs to be developed, and a launch vehicle still must be procured.

But project managers are confident that their technology development project eventually will be elevated to a fully funded mission — one that would be cost-capped at $250 million.

“It is the next logical step” in lunar exploration, said William Larson, whose title is In Situ Utilization Project Manager at KSC.

“And I fully believe that this is eventually going to happen. We’re going to get there,” he said. “And it’s really going to be a game-changer for how we explore and how we utilize the resources of space.”

Manufacturing water on the moon would yield oxygen for astronauts to breathe, as well as provide water for drinking, cooling systems, radiation shielding, growing plants and even for rocket propellant.

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NORCAT Appoints Innovator as Next CEO

Don Duval, new NORCAT CEO

Don Duval, NORCAT Chief Executive Officer

April 17, 2012

The Northern Centre for Advanced Technology Inc. (NORCAT) is proud to announce the appointment of Don Duval as Chief Executive Officer. Don Duval brings a wealth of experience, expertise and energy to NORCAT, which will mark the next phase in NORCAT's mine training and innovation initiatives.

Don Duval is an energetic, innovative business leader with demonstrated success as a public speaker, entrepreneur, angel investor, engineering professor, and as a leader at MaRS. Originally from Chatham, Ontario, Don has worked throughout North America in variety of sectors and roles focused on strategy and operations.

At MaRS, Don was responsible for client services and corporate strategy. As part of his broader provincial role, Don was also the head of the Toronto Regional Innovation Centre, the largest member in the Ontario Network of Excellence. NORCAT, being a Regional Innovation Centre (RIC) and a member of ONE, will enable Don to continue to be a leader in the ONE network as CEO of NORCAT, the RIC representing the largest geographical area in Ontario.

Don serves as an adjunct professor in the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Engineering and is an Executive Board member for the Queen’s Players Toronto Theatre Company, Nepali Children’s Education Program and JUMP Math. He is also the Toronto Chair for the Manning Innovation Awards, sits on the Advisory Boards for the Canadian Innovation Exchange and Spin Master Innovation Fund and is a past recipient of the Governor General of Canada’s Canadian NCE Young Innovators Award. He holds a BScH in Chemistry from Queen's University and a MASc in Civil Engineering from the University of Toronto.

"The NORCAT Board of Directors is looking forward to working with Don with his unique experience and enthusiasm. Don is a dynamic leader who has demonstrated tremendous success. His leadership will be an asset to NORCAT." said Board Chair Dan Kochanowski. "Don will continue to build upon the success outgoing CEO Darryl Lake has brought to NORCAT, and on behalf of the NORCAT Board of Directors I'd like to thank Darryl for 17 years of tremendous leadership."

"I was attracted to NORCAT's impressive history of catalyzing innovation and economic growth" said Don Duval. "I am excited to build on this strong foundation and work with the Board of Directors, the community, and the team to take NORCAT to the next level of excellence."

Don Duval will be acting CEO effective July 9, 2012.